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The Monk's Kettle

Not Rated.
The Monk's KettleThe Monk's Kettle

107 Ratings
Ratings: 107
Reviews: 71
rAvg: 4.42
pDev: n/a
Taps: 24
Bottles: 180
Cask: N
Beer-to-Go: Y
[ Bar, Eatery ]

3141 16th St
San Francisco, California, 94103-3334
United States
phone: (415) 865-9523

visit their websiteWebsite view map and get directionsMap @monkskettle

Place added by: NikStique on 12-07-2007

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Ratings: 107 | Reviews: 71
Photo of emerge077
4.5/5  rDev +1.8%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4.5

Rainy weekday afternoon called for refuge at Monk's Kettle. Wasn't crowded, only about half full.

A beer-zealous and enthusiastic bartender was tending the bar, he was very knowledgeable and offered us samples, all the while chatting with a few different folks at the bar. He suggested a "tiny Pliny" 10 oz. pour when I asked about smaller draft sizes. Several interesting draft options, Moonlight Sour Mash Wheat, Pliny the Elder, RR Temptation (unfortunately just delivered, and it hadn't settled yet). Drafts covered a range of prices, from an affordable $5 to an unheard of $15 (ouch).

Atmosphere was clean and modern, tons of assorted glassware behind the bar, with an eclectic row of curious vessels along the top shelf. Lambic pitchers, a copper Utopias bottle, and other curiosities. A row of wooden booths to the left of the bar reserved for dining patrons. There was a group of 6-8 that came in and made a big show over not getting a table for drinks, and left. More seats for the rest of us... It's a tiny place, not really designed for pub crawls of that size.

There was a very spendy "cellar reserve" list with some cellared stuff, nothing worth blowing a wad of cash over though. Food and bottle menu prices were also a bit higher than elsewhere in town, but there was quality to be had. Overall a great beer-focused place that deserves it's esteemed reputation.

Photo of coreyfmcdonald
4.44/5  rDev +0.5%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.5 | service: 5 | selection: 4

I came here this past weekend on a Friday night to a packed bar. The decor is nice, but it is a bit too upscale for my taste.

The service was great. The bartender was both knowledgeable and helpful. He made me feel very comfortable and offered suggestions. He even gave me a taste of a rare off menu beer that was absolutely delicious. Also, the host knew I was looking for a spot at the bar and came to get me when it came available. They go above and beyond and created a very enjoyable experience. It also helped that we spent plenty of money here. It's a bit expensive, but not unreasonably so.

The selection is impressive, but not amazing. I'd give it a 4.25 if I could. It had some very interesting tap and bottled beers, but the vintage list was a bit disappointing. If they expanded this list I could easily see them getting a 4.5. A more interesting tap offering would also help them out, though it was certainly good.

I highly recommend this place. It gets crowded, but has a great bottle list and a decent atmosphere. However, the service is truly exceptional.

Photo of stupac2
4.83/5  rDev +9.3%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 5 | food: 5

By far my favorite bar, mostly because it doesn't feel like a bar, it's more like a fantastic restaurant with a fantastic bar built in. Their food is delicious (and it's not merely good versions of pub food, though they certainly serve very good pub food), the selection fantastic, the staff knowledgeable and friendly. Service only gets knocked down from 5 because of the strange rules about tables (no seating while waiting for the rest of your party to arrive seems quite odd to me).

The only downside is the price, but it's worth it, at least every now and then.

Photo of NorCalgrowler
4.83/5  rDev +9.3%
vibe: 5 | quality: 5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 5 | food: 4.5

Went to the Monk's Kettle for part of my birthday tour of pubs last year in SF. This place to me is spectacular. Just an awesome selection of Belgian beers on tap. Great atmosphere - building is on a corner and you can see a lot of people/foot traffic outside. Its very much a European cafe style. The food was really traditional and also excellent. We had mussels and a charcuterie plate (or cured meat plate, cant quite remember). It was on the 100 SF Eats list for a pint of Belgian beer. And it should be. Cant wait to go back

Photo of swellbrewer
4.95/5  rDev +12%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 5 | service: 5 | selection: 5 | food: 5

Visited during craft brewers conference 2011. Had an 09' 10' vertical of abyss on draft and cantillon fou foune. Ordered the mussels and a cheese plate paired with various fruits. Menu was full of things I would like to try on my next visit. I was blown away to see fou foune on draft. So much so I had multiple glasses. Speaking of glassware these guys are pro's at that as well. All future visits to San Francisco will include a stop here. Highly recommend any foodies or beer geeks check this place out. Pretty cool neighborhood as well.

Photo of NorCalYeti
4.18/5  rDev -5.4%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4 | food: 4.5

Great beer bar/eatery located in the Mission. Street parking is available in the neighborhood. 16th St. BART is also within walking distance, which is a nice option. Arrived at 12p upon opening and was immediately greeted and asked whether I was there for food or drink. Sat down at one of 12 seats at the bar and was provided with a beer menu. The bartender was very friendly and helpful and open to pouring samples as requested. 24 beers on tap with two extras being poured off the list. A mix of Czech, American Pale Ale, English-Style Brown Ale, and Belgian-Style beers available on draught. And then the beer list...pretty much representative of every category you can think of. Major drawback is the price across the board...all the prices are inflated. Be prepared to pay dearly...especially for a big group. My choices were somewhat focused due to price. If you're out on the town and price isn't an issue, you've found your place. All beers poured in proper glassware with most beers poured a little cold, which is a drawback.

Plan to arrive early as the place fills quickly. We arrived at 12p on a Saturday and the place was full around 1:45p.

The place holds 49 people...approximately 12 seats at the bar and the remaining seats divided among eight, two and four tops. Rustic menu with snacks such as the daily pickle and elves on horseback, to small plates such as house salads, mushroom risotto, buttermilk fried rabbit, and mussels, and entrees like chicken paillard, duck confit, and diver scallops. Food coming out of the kitchen smelled great. Had a basket of fries that hit the spot.

I would definitely go back but would have to save my pennies ahead of time. Aside from the price, the other criticism might be the diversification of the beer list...while several beer styles are represented, only a couple of beers are available in each style, many of which aren't that rare or inspired. I would suggest they focus on fewer styles and have a deeper selection for the price.

Photo of BrewerB
4.8/5  rDev +8.6%
vibe: 4 | quality: 5 | service: 5 | selection: 5 | food: 4

I'm not a claustrophobic person but I do get the "this place is kinda small" feeling everytime I walk into The Monk's Kettle. Not sure if it's the guy at the door in charge of admission, the entryway, being immediately greeted by the end of the bar, or the lack of seating space. Like some other reviewers, I do wish this place were bigger.

The quality of beers you'll find here is first-rate. You won't find a single macro adjunct lager in the entire bunch.

Bartenders here are very knowledgeable, taking the same approach to beers that a sommelier would with wine. They're adept at recommending beers based off your tastes and palette, are attentive to your needs (empty glasses) and are good at remembering repeat customers.

The bottle selection is immense and well documented. Menus classify beers by style and you'll be hard pressed to find any beer style that isn't well-represented. For special occasions, they've even got a special menu of harder to get, small issue batches.

Though I've not been blown away by the small sampling of food I've had, I think more menu exploration would gain me a larger appreciation of their culinary treats.

Beers here are $1-$3 more than you'll find them around the city but I've never regretted paying a little extra for an hour or two at Monk's Kettle.

Photo of hophopandaway
4.66/5  rDev +5.4%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 5 | service: 4 | selection: 5

The biggest gripe I have with this place is that it is nowhere near big enough. it's so popular that by 6 all the seats at the bar and restaurant were taken and I saw dozens of people leave before they got in because there was not enough space for the poor unfortunate souls.
Bar tender was very helpful and service good. as is the style of this city beer is always slightly underpoured. The beer on offer was very tasty and I worked my way through the moonlight brews because it was meet the brewer night.
I met some really interesting people and the vibe was excellent.
They really do need to move though because they could have packed their small but homely and stylish bar out 3 or four times over, and I'd hate to get here and not get a seat.
It is a littel pricey and they have some beers that are $50 a bottle which I could never justify for a beer. If you're a visiting beerhead you absolutely must visit this place.

Photo of brewerburgundy
4.6/5  rDev +4.1%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 5 | service: 4 | selection: 5 | food: 4

I passed part of my new year's eve here and enjoyed it immensely. The atmosphere is pretty low key. When we first arrived, we were told we would could be seated for dinner because the bar was full. We (myself and my date) decided to go somewhere else for a bit at this point. About an hour later we returned and got the same answer. This time we opted to be seated and she to eat something. We were immediately seated and there was the glorious beer menu right in front of me. I was partly looking for value and so opted for the Grand Teton Black Cauldron Imperial Stout and I was not disappointed. My date ordered a NB Frambozen; both beers were served in high quality, unbranded tulip glasses. The selection is top notch, focusing on Benelux and regional California beers that are not necessarily easy to find.

My date had an arugula and trout salad that was excellent. She said it was one of the better salads she had had in quite some time and I'd have to agree. The server was a hipster girl who was very friendly and attentive. I'll definitely be going back to The Monk's Kettle and I hope to sit at the bar.

The selection is amazing and is on the higher end of the price spectrum but with good reason. You're in San Francisco for goodness sake, it's all really good beer, and their vintage/rare bottle list is awesome. Batch 1 Consecration anybody? The final beer of the night was Russian River Salvation served in an oversized wine glass. Five to ten minutes before midnight the server passed around poppers for us to pull, which we did and cheered with everybody in the joint. I didn't get any overt snootiness from this place, it was fun and filled with great beer.

Photo of CliffBrake
4.83/5  rDev +9.3%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 5 | service: 5 | selection: 4.5 | food: 5

Worth two stops during my week in SF, once for lunch and an encore for dinner. Both times the staff was very friendly and eagerly answered questions, which was especially appreciated during dinner hour as they were packed.

The pub is friendly, clean, and tastefully decorated. The small size is a definite limitation and it was a little difficult to have a conversation over the lively noise level in the evening.

There was plenty to choose from on the tap list that seems to vary almost daily, and is kept up to date on-line. Pub-fare was excellent quality, with a good mix of typical and eclectic choices. The menu suggests beer parings for each entre.

Prices were a little high to this country boy, but not bad considering city standards. However, the selection, quality and friendly service made this a memorable experience. I look forward to visiting again next trip to SF.

Photo of nmoreilly
3.63/5  rDev -17.9%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 2 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4

Checked this place out on a rainy Thursday night whilst in SF on business. It was quite busy. I was warmly greeted at the door and proceeded to belly up at the bar.

A very good selection of beers with focus being west of the Rockies and Belgium. The things that immediately stuck out to me were Pliny the Elder,Fullers London Porter, Stone Pale, Downtown Brown. For me there was never a doubt: Pliny the Elder. I had 2 pints of Pliny and a Pint of Stone PA. Food was good. I had a burger. Cooked properly, with fries without a long wait.

In general I have to say I like this place and I would recommend it. On the positive side it has a great selection of beers, good food and a pleasant atmosphere. On the negative side, I felt the bar staff came across as slightly indifferent. I couldn't help but feel that if youre not a regular that thay are happy to take your money, but thats about it.

Photo of DJButters
4.65/5  rDev +5.2%
vibe: 5 | quality: 5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4

Well if you are talking about beer pubs in SF than this is the opposite of Toronado. Good service, warm happy bar with good food. Dug it. Was bit pricey but you pay for what you get, at least I wasnt treated like cattle. Service was good...bartenders could be a little more knowledgeable about what they are selling, but were very attentive. The food and beer were absolutely delicious. The place was a little small but the atmosphere is cool. I highly recommend this to anyone in the area.

Good times with good people. Will be back

Photo of BoulderBill
3.88/5  rDev -12.2%
vibe: 4 | quality: 3.5 | service: 4 | selection: 4.5 | food: 3

Visiting from Boulder, Colorado it was nice to see the appreciation for Avery brews persists, and it was great to see some more obscure Oskar Blue's brews like Mama's Little Yella Pils, one of my favorite pilsners around.

I stayed away from the great selection of Belgian beers and went with two California ales I didn't recognize. A 'Home Grown Fresh-hopped Ale" from Moonlight Brewing shared the table with a lamb burger and fries. I was not overwhelmed by the beer (subtle, nice hop flavor, but nothing really stood out for me) and was markedly underwhelmed by the lamb burger. The mint in the patty just didn't do it for me, and it was not quite fatty enough to make for a true burger. For desert I tried the Big Eye IPA from Ballast Point Brewing out of San Diego. Maybe I don't get out much, but I had not heard of this brewery even though I do travel to San Diego on occasion. This was quite a hoppy beer, and relatively complex. A nice one to be sure.

Overall, it was great to see such an impressive selection and to find some new California beers. It might be worthwhile trying something on the Entree section of the menu next time just to see what they're really about on the food front.

Photo of jmhart
4.35/5  rDev -1.6%
vibe: 5 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 5 | food: 4

Visited Monk's Kettle on a recent trip back to San Francisco.

Stopped in for lunch and few brews.

Walked in and and immediately the place had a really charming neighborhood feel to it. Small but not too small, big but not too big, know what I mean?

The combination of the high ceilings, deep stained wood, mirrors, and large windows really made a great spot for lunch. Lots of ambiance.

The beer menu was great. Not as large as say, Toronado, but a strong represenation of styles and breweries. They really had a terrific selection. Anything style you could be in the mood for, and a top beer of that style to boot. My two selections were Moonlight Brewing Reality Czech and Midnight Sun Hop Dog.

Food was good. Above average pub fair. I had a flank steak sandwich that was pretty outstanding. I was torn between then, the Veggie Burger, and the Ahi Tuna sandwich. My buddy had the Pulled Pork sandwich, and we could smell it's deliciousness from the kitchen.

Extremely reasonable prices for the location and atmosphere. It was the perfect lunch.

Photo of NeroFiddled
4.5/5  rDev +1.8%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4.5

The Monk's Kettle makes up part of a nice little pub crawl, sandwiched between Pi and Gestalt. It's casual and comfortable with nice decor, but nothing that makes you feel you need to dress it up more than shorts and a t-shirt. It's classy but still remains a kind of neighborhood spot. (One note here... although it's called "The Monk's Kettle", it's not a Belgian-style bar in either beer or food).

The bar staff is quite knowledgable and in-tune, which is nice, as opposed to so many places that think they're educating you when they suggest a "HOE-garden" because you've said you like Belgian beers. Being from the east coast I wasn't familiar with many of the locals on tap, and I was given some very accurate descriptions and very good suggestions.

The food is quite good, and has a distinctive "Cali" feel to it featuring such items as a "Sushimi grade Ahi" sandwich, a "Humboldt Grassfed" Beef Burger and a Cornish Game Hen from "Field To Family Farms"... $16.50, $12.00, and $21.00 respectively. It is a bit pricey!

At the bar they offer 24 taps and 200+ bottles. There are Belgians, but the draft list is mainly composed of west coast and English ales. The bottle list does completely round it out, however, and I'd say it's a rather balanced and mostly comprehensive listing.

Overall, seeing as how small San Fran is, and how few beer bars there are, I'd absolutely put this one right up there with Toronado as a must-see (brewpubs not included).

Photo of ThreeWiseMen
4.85/5  rDev +9.7%
vibe: 4 | quality: 5 | service: 5 | selection: 5 | food: 4.5

Had to kill a some time Friday night while waiting to meet up with friends. Since I was in the area, I strolled into the Monk's Kettle. What an excellent choice that was!

I've gone by this place many times, and it always seems to be packed. Last night was no different. The crowd was decidedly young and, oddly enough, not bogged down with hipsters - yay!

After seating myself in the corner, a server immediately brought me a beer and food menu. The bottle list ran very deep, and the tap selection was loaded with local rarities. All of the food items sounded good, and they came with beer pairing suggestions. I was very impressed. The prices were steep though, and I decided to order a cup of tomato bisque and a Moonlight Sour Mash Lager, partially because they each sounded good, but mainly because they were the cheapest items on the menu.

My server/waiter was right on top of things, and approached me as soon as I looked ready. Immediately after ordering, he asked if I would like to open a tab. I told him that I was only staying for a single round, so he dropped off the check right then and there. While some may view this as rude, I didn't have much time to waste and appreciated the gesture. He immediately fetched my beer, and five minutes later I had my bisque, too. Service was very responsive and speedy.

The food and beer were absolutely delicious (although the soup came out extremely hot, and I burned my tongue on the first sip). I'd love to come back and try more things on their menu (both beer and food). This is one of the most complete beer bars I've ever been too, and possibly my new favorite in San Francisco. I highly recommend this to anyone in the area!

Photo of ritter57
4.58/5  rDev +3.6%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 5 | food: 4.5

I get to San Francisco often but I just went to this place for the first time. I will go back as often as I can. The beer selection is perfect. A nice variety, quality choices in each style, and a few lesser know gems. By the name I thought it would be too focused on Belgians but all of craft beer is well represented. The servers know a lot about the beer and made good recommendations. Great food too. The place was a little small but the atmosphere was cool. We arrived around 7:30 and got the last 3 seats available. By the time we left at 9:00 the place was packed and there was a long wait to sit down.

Photo of ericfb18
4.65/5  rDev +5.2%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 5 | service: 4 | selection: 5 | food: 4.5

In San Francisco on business...visited twice - 5/15 & 5/16.

Place gets quite busy...but for this beer selection, it's worth it! Beer list is about 4-5 pages long, with solid choices all around. Be ready to pay for it though. I had, over the two nights, an Old Rasputin XII, Cuvee de Tomme, Fou Foune and a Supplication. The beer list on their website seems to be very well maintained so always up-to-date. Prices are listed to give you an idea of what to expect.

Service was good...bartenders could be a little more knowledgeable about what they are selling, but were very attentive. Had an excellent cheese platter, but no entree...menu looked great though.

Highly recommended to anyone in town...well worth the visit.

Photo of raoulduke37
4.66/5  rDev +5.4%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4.5

This little gem in the Mission is a must-stop for any beer lover, period. A good counterpoint to Toronado on the other side of town, and near many fine food establishments.

Atmosphere - Awesome! Little bar, non-pretentious, the cook grilling away happily, and customers and employees chatting away happily about beer or non-beer related stuff. Right above the bar is a salvaged walk-in fireplace frame, a la Citizen Kane.

Quality - Very beer-centric, clean taplines, everything clean and classy. Huge glassware collection, and our man behind the bar definitely knew how to pour.

Service - Ignore Yelp for this portion. One guy was complaining about the service, but this was the type of dude who wouldn't look out of place on the Jersey Shore. He then proceeded to give a five star rating to his gym, for having a great personal trainer who helped him improve his physique. You get the picture. Our guy, can't remember his name, really knew his beer, corrected me amicably a few times when I was talking to him, poured all beer perfectly into clean, appropriate glasses, was VERY attentive to other customers in the place, etc.

Selection - Not huge, but awesome! On tap I had RR Temptation and Lagunitas Wilco Tango Foxtrot, bottle list has some gems, but I found them to be too expensive.

Food - Didn't try but looked amazing. In typical SF fashion, it is all local, sustainable, grass-fed, etc. Very environmentally conscious.

Value - On-tap value is very reasonable, and although the bottle selection is great, most were way out of my price range.

All in all, a great place that I'll visit every time I'm in city.

Photo of jdense
3.94/5  rDev -10.9%
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 4

Visited 4.3.10 early pm during SFO beer tour.

Very small establishment, less than 10 tables and about 12 seats at bar with 6-8 seats on ledge next to open kitchen. 24 taps, very high quality, but prices are quite expensive, $7.75 for Pliny, and $11.25 for Lucifer after paying $8 at Le Trappe the night before. Extensive bottled list, once again very high quality and very very expensive, $12.75 for HOTD Fred and Adam, not much value in the beer offerings. Nice looking Belgian-style menu, once again high priced, but it looked quite tasty. I don't know if they are trying to be like Le Trappe, but the vibe isn't as cool. Really nice help, and I had a nice conversation with a well-traveled Scandinavian gentlemen. If looking for quality beer and above average food, albeit at a very high price, this is someplace to visit, though there isn't much value to this up and coming beer bistro.

Photo of cleverbeername
4.13/5  rDev -6.6%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4

I like the walk in only style. made a door reservation and was quoted an hour, turned out to be half that time (big point for the over estimate). small place with nice decor, not over the top crap on the walls kinda of place but not overtly sterile and artsy. staff was on it, well versed, polite, timely (i did however get upsold from $12 to $35 without the server disclosing the price, but good for him for pulling it off, i respect sales and its my bad for not asking or looking). Food was great, paired nice and was creative. i left happy, not over stuffed full of greasy bar food. price is spot on beer geeks should be weary to label this as too pricey. non business owners need to understand the fine balance of paying good staff for front and back of the house and cover turn ratio, so i think again its spot on. as a last note, this would be hard to pull off out of a larger city.

Photo of mjl21
4.14/5  rDev -6.3%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 4.5

The Monk's Kettle is a nice beer bar/restaurant that is in the heart of the Mission district, which means you can find metered parking during the day and if you're lucky a spot at night. If you can, use public transportation. All of my visits have come during the day time for a quick pint and I have not dealt with the crowds that are common at night.

The space is fairly small. When you walk in the bar is to your right and there are booths lining the other wall. They have a really large beer menu. I counted twenty plus taps and they have a really extensive bottle list. Most draught offerings are real pints and if not, the serving size is posted on the menu. They have a really nice selection of glassware above the bar.

For their draught offerings they do a good job of integrating locals like RR, Marin, Moonlight, and Iron Springs, along with stuff from American breweries like Firestone Walker, Stone, Oskar Blues, and DFH. They also carry a lot of Euro brands. The tap prices are about normal for SF, but a lot more than the Toronado. Expect to pay a tad under $8 for a pint of Pliny the Elder. Not surprisingly the Belgian drafts cost more.

The bottled beers are usually quite expensive. It seems like most are more than double or triple what you would pay at a retail store. $37.50 for an Alesmith Old Numbskull and $65.00 for a 2009 Lost Abbey Angel's Share (the infamous flat one) is price gouging.

I can't speak for the food as I have never eaten here. I have heard they make great mac n cheese and burgers.

The service at the bar has always been polite. They are quick to pour you a drink and seemed to be helpful to customers who had questions.

This is a nice addition to the SF beer scene. I recommend sticking more with their draught beer as the prices are much more reasonable. They also get major points for doing a good job of updating their website with what is on tap. I definitely plan to return to try some food.

Photo of radshoesbro
4.28/5  rDev -3.2%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4 | selection: 4.5 | food: 3.5

It's in a fairly unkempt, sort of Street Chic neighborhood. However, don't let the surroundings fool you. This is a top of the line beer bar! They've got some really remarkable beers. They had Old Rasputin XI nearly two years after it's release and Duvel Green. The problem? Their beers are insanely expensive. This is in no way cheap, and not even a little pricey, it's damn expensive ($14 for some 8 oz pours)! Look at some of the bottle prices and you'll see my point. Which makes me think that it clearly is catering to an older crowd.

The establishment itself is very nice. Lot's of wood, with a beautiful bar! Proper glassware is served with all the beers.

The tap list really isn't the best I've seen, but it's good enough that it makes me interested. The bottle selection is really where they shine. I really wish they weren't so expensive, cause some of them are fucking gems! Yes, they have their fair share of very pedestrian beers, which are slightly more reasonably priced. Luckily for me they poured me an 8 oz glass of what was advertised as a 4 oz pour, which was really cool of them!

I had a sausage sandwich, which was quite good. Definitely better than other ones I've had, so that was a plus. My wife described her chicken sandwich as "good in theory." Guess it just didn't deliver the goods! The food is also very pricey and for the price it really doesn't deliver. If my sandwich was $8 instead of $15 I would've been in heaven.

Will I ever go back here? Only if someone else is paying! The prices just kill it and for as good as they are it's just not worth it if you're on any type of budget.

Photo of nickd717
3.9/5  rDev -11.8%
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 3 | selection: 4 | food: 4.5

Let me start by saying that if money is no object, this is an excellent place. The beer selection is great and the food is amazing. You can find great limited beers like The Bruery Papier and Russian River Supplication way after they're gone from all local stores. Unfortunately for most of us who aren't Bill Gates, the Google founders, a big-time professional athlete, or an evil, greedy investment banking executive, money is a thing. Well, that is, until we go to Monk's Kettle. After that, the thing in our wallets that was originally a bunch of money will have completely disappeared.

This place is really, really, ridiculously expensive and marks up beer like most nice restaurants do with wine. I just think that 2.5x or higher wine mark-ups are insane and people are crazy to pay them, and I enjoy the fact that great beer can still be had with a great meal for a reasonable price. Not at Monk's Kettle. You're going to be paying (and I read directly from their beer list) $35 for an AleSmith Speedway Stout (usually $12), $11.25 for a Duvel (usually $3.50), and $28 for a Lost Abbey Judgment Day (usually $10).

However, if you can take the wallet hit and want to impress someone with great food paired with world class beer, this is the place. I had some really excellent food there. There simply aren't many things better than great beer and great food. Last time I went, I had a charcuterie plate, a creamy bowl of tomato soup, and a pulled pork sandwich, along with a La Trappe Isid'Or, a Ballast Point Sculpin IPA, and an '05 North Coast Old Stock Ale (reasonably priced surprisingly!). All were incredible.

Monk's Kettle can really wow you, but you're going to have to hand over the majority of your paycheck for the pleasure. Oh yeah, and it gets crowded and they don't typically take reservations. Go before 6:30 for a weekend dinner unless you want to wait hours for a table. Now if you'll excuse me, I'm heading to Monk's Kettle to shell out $85 for a beer dinner. D'oh! *Final note: I should also add Jermaine Dupri and Jay-Z to the list of people who don't think money is a thing, since they had a song specifically called, "Money Ain't a Thing."

Photo of woodychandler
4.47/5  rDev +1.1%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4 | service: 4.5 | selection: 5

What a find! A fantastic diamond in the rough of the Mission District. 16th just up from Valencia and right across from Amnesia. Boy, can I pick'em.

It was a small space, but well appointed. The dark wood bar was directly inside to the right. The back bar featured a pair of flanking Japanese/Chinese lions elaborately carved into the equally dark wood. The bar lamp fixtures were reminiscent of the pointed straw hats commonly worn in SE Asia. Come to think of it, the booths along the left wall were very evocative of Japan, with the slatted seats and dividers. The kitchen was also right, just aft of the bar and utilized a zigzag pattern that incorporated chalkboards to list available beers, plus requests and quotations. As I entered, our small world grew smaller as Nick from the Chalet greeted me as I headed to the lav. Much better success than what I encountered in MTYCO. Friendly unobtrusive, attentive. The open nature of the kitchen lent itself to the scents of cooking. I twice salivated over whatever was on the grill. Lovely being an unapologetic omnivore. I simply enjoyed letting my eyes slide around the taps and the BT display. These are great times in which we live, bro!

Beer: Twenty-four (24) taps, 14 of which were CA, 5 Belgian, which is simply a quantification. BTs - around 100 different. Impressive!

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The Monk's Kettle in San Francisco, CA
97 out of 100 based on 107 ratings.